Dey ‘Fraid Asot?

Speaker and Asot in Parliament


by G.A.Dwyer Astaphan

On the afternoon of May 18, 2023, Member of Parliament for the St. Peter Constituency in Antigua, Mr.Asot Michal was suspended from the Parliament for the next three sittings.

Mr. Michael was, at the time, on his feet, delivering what I thought to be a very incisive, well reasoned and significant presentation on a Bill relating to prosecutorial  powers of the Police and the Director of Public Prosecutions.

He was passionate, articulate, and on point, punching hard and punching clean.

And he was making some people uncomfortable. The head shots that he was throwing were making some people dizzy.

Reportedly, during the morning portion of the sitting Prime Minister Gaston Browne and Attorney General Steadroy Benjamin and one Gaston Browne had tried to rattle Mr. Michael with interruptions, and cross talk, and and their punishment was a tap on the wrist by House Speaker, Gerald Watt.

Now as Mr. Michael addressed the House in the afternoon, Mr. Benjamin rose on a point of order to say that Mr. Michael was reading his speech. Despite Mr. Michael’s defence that he was simply referring to his “copious notes”, the Speaker took Mr. Benjamin’s point  and ordered Mr. Michael to stop reading. The Speaker also said that he had observed Mr. Michael reading his speech during the morning but had said nothing, but, as Speaker Gerald Watts declared, “the buck stops now”.

Some questions: How many years has Mr. Watts been Speaker, 9 years? How many times over the years had he ‘seen’ Mr. Michael ‘reading’ his speech over the past 9 years? How many times has he ordered Mr. Michael to stop reading his speeches over the past 9 years, and when  did Speaker Watts start ordering Mr. Michael to do so? Might this muscular and totally uncalled for approach by the Speaker towards Mr. Michael have been triggered by recent events?

The people of Antigua & Barbuda need to get these questions answered because if for a simple and relatively harmless thing like that we see an escalation to the Speaker ordering a person who is elected by the people of your country to represent thousands to be thrown out of Parliament, then there is a real problem.

A well prepared member can have copious notes and can refer to them frequently.

But from ordering him to stop reading, the Speaker, now having clearly lost his way and his composure, decided to have Mr. Michael named, and suspended, but the proper procedure to do so was not followed. He should have called upon a member of the House to put a motion, but that didn’t happen, and this is one reason, in my opinion, Mr. Michael will win his case if he brings it to Court. And the folly of the Speaker and those who went along with him will cause them all to swallow their own political spit.

Contributing to the Speaker’s anger was Mr. Michael’s comment, made after the action had begun, that he, the Speaker, was biased and a mercenary. Mr. Michael should not have made that comment, but still it was not something that rose to the level of justifying naming and suspension. He was no threat to anybody or to the peaceful proceedings of the House. This was not an aggravated situation that would justify what was done to Mr. Michael, and, through him, to the people of St.Peter and, indeed, to parliamentary democracy in Antigua & Barbuda and the region.

Suspended for three sittings! That could keep Mr. Michael out of the House for weeks, maybe months!

And if bad judgment is repeated, on a second occasion he could be suspended for six sittings. Six!

Mr. Michael needs to get this matter into the Court as soon as possible and his supporters need to peacefully picket the House to show their unhappiness with what has been done to their representative and to them. Indeed, all right-minded Antiguans and Barbudans need to do so because this is an attack on all, not just on Mr. Michael and his constituents. Further, the region needs to speak out and condemn this act.

No, man!

Looks like dey ‘fraid Asot.

I can’t end this without scolding the Opposition. While they may have thought, and if so, rightly so (in my opinion) that the action to suspend Mr. Michael was in breach of the rules, they should nevertheless have demanded a division on the motion to suspend, so that the whole country, and the whole world could hear, and the record would show, how each and every member of the House voted on that motion.

It could have caused some interesting responses. And in any event, it would have been the right and strategic thing to do.

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  1. “Some questions: How many years has Mr. Watts been Speaker, 9 years? How many times over the years had he ‘seen’ Mr. Michael ‘reading’ his speech over the past 9 years? How many times has he ordered Mr. Michael to stop reading his speeches over the past 9 years, and when did Speaker Watts start ordering Mr. Michael to do so? Might this muscular and totally uncalled for approach by the Speaker towards Mr. Michael have been triggered by recent events?”

    Mr Astaphan you are clearly lost. This has been going on for years and the speaker has often called him out. I know of no other parliamentarian who needs to read a speech like AM. He has been warned and penalized before. I will remind again. no one said nay (not even opposition members). Hence the decision to suspend AM was unanimous


      TEN, my friend, they appeared to have been ‘…ALL DUMMIES.’

      Not agreeing with author that -‘…Dey Fraid,’ more out of of ‘…IGNORANCE.’

      The whole ‘House Membership’ were ‘…ALL BULLIED’ into acting ‘…Ignorantly and Stupidly.’

      The Member appeared ‘…RUDE LIKE HELL.’ No justification.



      They knew not even the darn ‘HSO’s’ (House Standing Orders- 2020: No. 50 (7).


      (i) …The Speaker ‘Named’ the Disorderly Member – Correct:
      (ii) …Put the matter before the ‘House,’ -Correct:
      (iii) …Called upon Members of the Government to take action- ‘…WRONG LIKE HELL:
      (iv) …Subsequently called on the House to take action;- ‘…WRONG LIKE HELL:
      (v) …Putting ‘…Suspension Penalty’ to the House (MajorityMembers): – WRONG LIKE HELL.’


      There was ‘…NO MOTION’ before the House, ‘…MOVED and SECONDED’ bY any Member.


      (vi) …The ‘…Suspension Voters’ appeared ‘NOT’ to know of ‘…HSO- 50 (7):’ ALL IGNORANT LIKE HELL.’



          With Pompey, you are not right.

          Don’t know about ‘…Astaphan.,

          Never met and spoken.

          Suffice to say, a ‘…Donkey’ said the same darn thing.

          Said to me, ‘…The oly thing donkeys know is how to ‘…Pray.’

          Asked it if it meant ‘…Bray? It said, ‘…He Haw.’

          Never liked this darn Page.

          Ask TenMan. Been around since the days of

          Top of the evening, though.

    • Tenman you can at least agree that the grand puba made a blunder when in his haste to kick out Asot he didn’t follow the correct procedure.
      For a man that loves to talk about earskin may and parliamentary procedure, it appears Asot was right, time for him to go home.

  2. Well said, see it dey in one!

    ABLP ganging up on Asot Michael … dem ‘fraid ah he so.

    Here comes @ From The Sideline, tenman and the other Gassy acolytes in 3, 2, 1 … Kaboof, bang bing mi ah tell you 🤣🤣🤣

    Brixtonian is back after promoting his business – onwards and upwards my fellow Antiguans.

    • Catching up on what’s been going on in the ANR threads now …

      Have you missed Brixtonian? 😁

      • @ BRIXTONIAN

        NOBODY miss you. Brixtonian I know for sure you would support ASOT with His Foolishness. Brixtonian go back in hiding. You are a DISGRACE to UPP. Hypocrite you are !!!

        You promised that you would not be posting in this medium if ABLP win the election…What happened Brixtonian ???? .You cannot be true to Yourself.

      • As I said earlier @ PETE and @ PAPA C, in 3, 2, 1 … kaboof, 🔥bang🔥 bing!


        • @Brix you are so gay … It’s like u just love man … U could have stayed away and redeem yourself, but gosh u just love man … Hlfw.. no longer on the seen so AM is now your new guy… Strange how girls like u wanted to jail Asot when he was apart of the Ablp now you are his biggest cheerleader. Prostitution really know no bonderies

        • @BRIXTONIAN

          Brixtonian and Ms. Knight ( from Observer Radio ) were off the same time. They probably hooked UP / IN.

  3. I do not fault Asot Michael one bit.

    As a matter of fact, Asot should still be cussing the old fart up to now.

    We have to look at things collectively and the old fart believes he is still the same person from years ago when he did as he like.

    Well, people remember him and his history and see him for who he is (a gastonite).

    He is not all he makes himself out to be as a person in my opinion, and most people in the public have caught on to him but we do not have the ability to give him some choice words in parliament.

    Asot did it for us and we say thank you Asot for being our voice.

    Go to hell Gerald Watt.

  4. What is there to be afraid of? Asot will be his own downfall much the detriment of his constituency and Antigua.

    The only reason he ran so hard to win is because he knows that once he’s not covered by immunity, that the UK government will be coming for him.

    Now I don’t condone what the Speaker nor the other side did BUT Asot was baited and he took the bait hook, line and sinker. The opposition sat there and only after he was expelled spoke out against it. They could’ve walked out in solidarity with him or made their objections known at the time.

    Personally, I think the man is unstable and obviously he is unraveling at the seams, but he too is power hungry just like the rest of them. To me he is no different from the rest of them but absolute power corrupts absolutely and they will ALL be their own undoing.

    • Yeah, lots of things going on in St. Kitts I’m sure, they’re having to deal with the mess that the Antigua and Barbuda Government handed to them unexpectedly. What does this say for regional integration? Which government is a threat to that? It ain’t St.Kitts, they’re smart enough not to get duped.

  5. I am afraid Mr. Astaphan that you got it all wrong this time. Mr. Michael was not suspended because he was reading his speech, he was suspended because he was responding to the disparaging remarks and threats made towards him from both the Member for City West and the Member for City South. Mr Michael’s argument was that he was not given any protection by the Speaker of the House whom he found was very biased but was therefore unfairly singled out and ejected from the proceedings despite several interruptions from both Members for City West and City South during his presentation. The suspension of the Member for St. Peter in my opinion was not consistent
    with Standing Order 50(7) and therefore null and void. It’s time to bring the House of Parliament back to order and get on with the people’s business and stop this personal attack on Members of Parliament from the Speaker come right down. Members of Parliament were elected by the people and for the people. SO STOP TURNING THE HOUSE PARLIAMENT INTO A DOLLY HOUSE!!!!!

  6. George government was it not you upp people who made conditions so bad for the refuguees that they stated they fely descrimated against? Its no wonder some took to the seas since your ilk were calling them stink, teroists, theifs, disease carriers. Yet watch you now pass your place and now try to blame Gaston Browne. Unlike some other leaders, Browne takes action. Years now Motley, the government in Jamaica talking about the need for a direct flight to Africa.

    • Tenman thou doth protest too much, as the saying goes. After your government lied to the people about bringing wealthy tourists, which turned out to be refugees you want to blame the UPP?

      You should find out how many of them are still in Antigua, because despite the tragedy the smuggling continues and you can hardly find life jackets in Antigua now, cause they buy them up.
      By the way you don’t find it curious that the one that think they are the brightest bulb in Antigua is claiming they got duped? Please!

      • Ruler where is your evidence that some (government never claimed all AA travelers would be wealthy but some) wealthy Nigerians did not come via AA? You do know the company investing in Liat is based in Nigeria? The info as I recall is most of the refugees did not come via AA, but Hi Fly (see Tourists from African flights dismayed by cost of Jolly Beach accommodations, 24 December 2022)

  7. We are all aware that there is fear, in the ALP, of Asot Michael. He was a key player in their game so he’s just as good as anyone of them and we know that they all share secrets. Asot was highlighting the Odebretch issue and the 18th candidate would have none of it. We are hearing that Asot is unstable but so too is Gaston and while Gaston with the ALP and Asot are playing out their war games in our parliament, we still don’t have water running in our pipes, still can’t keep up with the rapidly increasing costs of just about everything and the escalating rate of crime. They need to just leave and let us breathe again.

  8. No wonder his EX-wife prefer to deal with pottery than with him. When your wife chooses an INANIMATE OBJECT over you, you would have FAILED AS A MAN! carry on beak nose….. Labour don’t want you now you old and washed up and flopped

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